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- Basic - Computers - Desktops - Excel - Laptops - Microsoft Office - Software - Word - December 1, 2022

How to password-protect documents in Microsoft Word and Excel

To stop other users from opening, editing, deleting, or performing any other unwanted actions on a Microsoft Word document or an Excel spreadsheet, users may want to secure the document or spreadsheet.
A password that secures a document can be set up, requiring users to input the password in order to open, read, or edit the document.
Additionally, a password can be established to block people from changing particular sections of an Excel document.
For instructions on how to add password security to a Word or Excel document, select from the choices below.

Protect entire Word & Excel documents

Users of Microsoft Word and Excel may safeguard each page of their documents with a password by following the procedures below.
It should be mentioned that making a backup copy of your file without a password is normally a smart idea in case you forget it.
If you decide to do this, it is recommended to keep the unencrypted file on a USB stick rather than locally.

Word and Excel 2010 and newer

  1. The spreadsheet or document you want to password-protect should be opened in Microsoft Word or Excel.
  2. Click the File tab.
  3. Pick Info from the menu.
  4. Select Protect Document from the menu.
  5. Click Restrict Editing to limit or prevent other users from making changes to the document, or click Encrypt with Password to need a password to open the document.
  6. In the Password text area, enter a password, then click Ok.
  7. In the Reenter password text area, enter your password once more, and then click Ok.
  8. To save the new password, save the file.
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Word and Excel 2007

  1. The spreadsheet or document you want to password-protect should be opened in Microsoft Word or Excel.
  2. Click the Microsoft Office button in the top-left corner of the screen.
  3. Move the mouse pointer over Prepare in the pop-up menu and select Encrypt Document.
  4. After choosing a password, enter it in the Password text area and hit Ok.
  5. In the text box labeled Reenter Password, enter the password once more, then click Ok.
  6. To save the new password, save the file.

Password to open – By selecting this option, individuals who know the password can only access the file.

Password to modify – This option allows people to access the file, but only those who know the password may change and save it.
But keep in mind that someone may access the file and copy its information into another document.

Removing a password – To remove a password from a secured document, repeat the instructions in the preceding section, but erase the characters provided in the Password box.

Protect parts of the document in Excel

In order to prevent alteration, protection can be set up in an Excel spreadsheet for specific cells, a single worksheet, or an entire workbook.
It is impossible to add, modify, or remove data from the protected cells, worksheet, or workbook.
It is also possible to prevent the workbook’s macros from being deleted or altered.

To protect a worksheet or particular cells in a worksheet, follow the instructions below for your version of Excel.

Excel 2007 and newer

  1. Choose the cells you want to protect.
  2. Select Protect Sheet from the Review tab by clicking it.
  3. Make sure the Select unlocked cells option is selected in the Protect Sheet box.
    Ensure that the Select locked cells checkbox is not selected as well.
  4. Click Ok after entering a password to secure the worksheet.
  5. When asked, enter the same password once again to validate the security.
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The actions mentioned above stop users from changing the values in the cells you chose to be protected.
Only the cells you did not choose will be left open to users’ additions and deletions of values.

Use the same procedures outlined above to remove the protection from a workbook or worksheet.
Instead of Protect, the options now state Unprotect.

To unlock the worksheet or workbook, you need the password.
Without the password, the protection cannot be removed.

Excel 2003 and older

  1. Choose the cells you want to protect.
  2. Format Cells is the option to choose by right-clicking the cells.
  3. Click the Protection tab in the Format Cells box.
  4. Select the Locked checkbox, then click Ok.
  5. Click Tools -> Protection from the main Excel menu, then choose Protect Sheet.
  6. Enter a password in the Protect Sheet window to secure the worksheet, then click Ok.
  7. When asked, enter the same password once again to validate the security.

Use the same procedures as before to unlock a workbook or worksheet’s security.
Now, rather than Protect, the alternatives state Unprotect.

To unlock the workbook or worksheet, you need to know the password.
Without the password, it is impossible to unlock.

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